Anna Hamilton is a pop singer-songwriter living in Nashville. Hamilton recently released her debut single, “Self Help.” However, Anna’s journey is somewhat unique compared to others who move to Music City. Originally from Kansas, Anna wrote folk songs when she first started to write songs. I am sure most would agree that moving from folk music to pop music is a significant change. Keep reading to learn more about Anna’s life and musical journey.
The Beginning of Anna’s Passion for Music
Anna moved to Nashville three years ago to attend Belmont University, but her story began much earlier in Kansas. Anna Hamilton is a member of a large, close family. However, Anna is the only one chasing the dream of a music career. Hamilton said, “I have eleven siblings. Including me, there are six boys and six girls. Everyone in my family is musical, but none pursued it. I got started with piano lessons and choir. I fell in love with music. My family traveled a lot because I am a competitive water skier. My family would pack into an RV going to competitions, so I would go into the back room and lock the door. I began playing guitar and banjo in the back, and that is where I started writing songs.”
Unlike many who move to Nashville to keep fueling their passion for music, Anna Hamilton took a detour through Lawrence, Kansas. The singer-songwriter said, “I went to Kansas University for two years. Before I went, I knew I wanted to make music, but I decided to save money for two years and join the KU water ski team. After two years, I had a strong gut feeling I needed to go. I applied to Belmont without telling anyone, and they accepted me. It was three weeks before I was supposed to move when I finally told my family. Although they didn’t believe me until the car was packed.”
Every songwriter has an adjustment period after moving to Nashville. However, Anna had to adjust to being away from her family. Hamilton said, “It was weird being away from my family, but we are all independent. It wasn’t easy being away from everyone, especially seeing everyone get together for birthdays or bonfires. We are very close, but it was the little things I missed. I made a lot of trips home in my first couple of years.“
Every artist had a different impression of Nashville when the first got here. Many visit several times before moving to town, but Anna said, “I had not visited Nashville before moving there.” Hamilton continued, “I did not have any expectations, but I had a lot of hope. About Nashville as a whole, I didn’t realize how great the pop music community is here.” Undiscovered Nashville can relate to Anna about the pop community. We are just scratching the surface, learning of the incredible talent in Nashville.
Anna Hamilton Decides to Become an Artist
The moment Anna Hamilton knew music was what she wanted to do came after the singer-songwriter started at Belmont. Hamilton said, “Before coming to Belmont, music was just a pipe dream. However, I saw so much around me, because I studied music business. I am thorough in my approach, and I am a hands-on person. Coming from Kansas, I didn’t know about the music industry. My idea of the business was playing in the church choir with seventy-year-old men.”
Hamilton took advantage of school to learn as much as possible, but something was missing for her. The singer-songwriter said, “I began interning with management companies, and I became envious of the artists. I wanted to do everything they were doing, and I saw myself succeeding in that. After graduation, I started songwriting, and I was also working for a management company. However, I realized I was spreading myself too thin, and I needed to focus on where I wanted to go. Now, I am beginning to release my music.”
Anna Hamilton on Co-writing and Performing
Your first experience with co-writing can be a little awkward or perfectly normal, depending on if you know your co-writers. Hamilton described how she felt during her first experience in the writer’s room. Anna said, “I had never co-written before moving to town, so it was a different experience altogether. Walking into the room and having to put my heart on a silver platter was difficult. I had to tell everyone about myself for an hour, but we had never met. I was very uncomfortable in the beginning, but it taught me about vulnerability.”
Singer-songwriters love to create music, but a significant part of the creation of music is performing. The reaction from the crowd nodding and singing along can be infectious to a performer. Hamilton said, “Performing is an experience where you forget other people are in the room. Performing seems less intimate because you are giving your songs away to people. However, it’s almost more intimate because you can reflect on that moment and dive in and forget anyone else is there. Performing makes me come alive in a different way.”
Anna Hamilton Releases Her Debut Single, “Self Help”
Anna Hamilton released her Debut single, “Self Help,” on August 21, 2020. The lyrics are relatable to many people who spend so much time helping others at their own expense. Hamilton wrote the song with Sara Davis, Kendall Brower, and Joel Blackmon on a songwriter’s retreat.
Songwriter’s retreats allow you to get away and focus on creating music. Hamilton said, “We were talking about how nice it was to get away from everybody. Sometimes it feels like we are go go go, and forget what we are working toward. We run ourselves dry. My friend Sara was looking at her iPad, and it had a lot of quotes and pictures. She said how self-help of me. We were laughing, and I said that’s the song we are writing today.”
The song is a reminder to us all how vital self-care can be. The singer-songwriter said, “I hope the song permits people to love themselves. It’s okay to take care of yourself before anyone else.” The song moved me, and I took some time for self-reflection after hearing the lyrics.
Fun Facts and Future Plans
Anna Hamilton may have the most unique backstory of the artists we have featured on Undiscovered Nashville. In addition to being one of twelve children, we mentioned she was competitive water skier. Hamilton said, “My dad moved us out to the country on a lake, where he took an interest in water skiing with all of his friends.”
Anna learned to ski at a young age. The singer-songwriter said, “My dad taught my older siblings to ski when they were teenagers, but I was a baby when we moved to the lake. I started skiing when I was four years old. I went to my first national competition at eight years old.”
If you like Anna’s debut single, then you are in luck. Hamilton has plans to release five more singles following “Self Help.” You can listen to her debut single on Apple Music or Spotify. Follow Anna on social media to learn about future releases. Thanks for reading, and let us know what you think in the comments.